We’ve got all kinds of cars! There are cars that look like the horse is missing, cars with bullet noses and cars with fins as big as airplane wings. Some are unique and some are examples of the vehicles that used to fill our streets.
Few visitors to the Museum will know that Virginia was a participant in the early automobile industry. Three companies produced automobiles in the state in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Dawson Auto-Mobile of Basic City, near Harrisonburg, built a steam-powered runabout between 1899-1901. The total output of the company was one vehicle. Kline Kar, a Pennsylvania company, operated a plant in Richmond from 1912-1923. The Piedmont Motor Car Company produced roadsters, touring cars and small trucks in nearby Lynchburg from 1917 to 1922. Vehicle sales ended in 1923.
Of the three companies, the Piedmont Motor Car Company was the only one chartered in Virginia to mass produce automobiles. In fact, to this day, Piedmont Motor is the only automobile company ever chartered in the State of Virginia. Only three Piedmont vehicles are known to exist. The Virginia Museum of Transportation is proud to exhibit one of the three, a 1923 Piedmont 4-30 Touring Car. Read more about the Piedmont…
Use the menu to the right to learn about specific vehicles or take the tour to see a sample of our broad collection.